10 Colorado Restaurants to Try Before You Die: 2015 Edition (Rooster Magazine)

10 Colorado Restaurants to Try Before You Die: 2015 Edition

Culture January 19, 2015

There’s food, and then there’s food that makes you reevaluate your life. These 10 new Colorado restaurants specialize in the latter.

Los Chingones
2461 Larimer St #102, Denver
(303) 295-0686

Los Chingones, as it were, is not for pussies. Maybe it’s the fact that the city of Denver won’t let them display their name outside their restaurant because it’s Spanish for “The Badasses.” Maybe it’s the fact that they’re working on a hot sauce that contains the aphrodisiac cobra blood. Or maybe it’s the fact that their concept is based around catering to adventurous eaters who reject complacency when it comes to Mexican food.

Case in point: their Mexican fundido with homemade rattlesnake chorizo. And while rattlesnake might strike fear into the faint of heart, the way Los Chingones prepares it is impossibly light, both in flavor and mouthfeel, lending itself swimmingly to the fundido. It comes with an extra layer of baked cheese on top for added textural whimsy. The surprising depth of flavor of the snake rattles perfectly with their infamous Pop Rocks margarita, which ignites a sugary explosion in your mouth with every sip; it’s impossible to drink one without smiling.

We’d be idiots if we didn’t continue on with the unexpected-Mexican theme; so we’re also going to strongly suggest you try their confit octopus taco, primarily because a) who else has the balls to put octopus on a taco, and b) because it’s ungodly good. It’s served with a blood orange reduction, pasilla salsa and crispy parsnips, which come together in an ultimate orgy of citrusy saline crunch. But Los Chingones isn’t all rare meats and snake blood — their garden guac is a vegetarian’s wet dream. Featuring charred corn salsa, toasted pumpkin seeds, cilantro and cotija cheese, it’s a refreshing take on guacamole that’s crisp and alive with the delectable balance of creamy avocado and the fleshy bite of toppings.

All this is made infinitely better by the fact that they never freeze anything; their entire menu is prepared fresh daily. Los Chingones also has an awesome rooftop patio. It’s open, modern layout and massive bar make it an awesome place to impress your Tinder date, or meet a substitution for said Tinder date if said Tinder date resembles Chris Farley. Go to it.

Chef’s Favorite Restaurant: “Da Lat Vietnamese.” – Troy Guard, Owner/Chef
“Go Fish Sushi.” – Luiz Ortiz, Head Chef